Getting your first couple of pitches accepted is a pain. And when you finally succeed in getting that pitch just right for, say, Scientific American, you have to start all over again and figure out how to get the thumbs up from New Scientist. Or Nature, perhaps... Different publications have different editors who want different types of articles... and pitches. It’s a complicated world for the young and early-career science writer.

In an attempt to simplify things, Bora and I set up “Operation Database of the Future”, a public Google Doc spreadsheet contributed by young and early-career science writers, for young and early-career science writers.

What is “Operation Database of the Future”?

?       A depository of successful pitches junior science writers are willing to share with fellow junior science writers;

?       A database which consists of some important information and tips about how and what to pitch to the different publications;

?       A place to start networking with “friends in low places” (and not-so-low places).

By sharing both successful pitches and some tips, you, as a contributor, can provide fellow junior science writers with more information about various publications, from their topics of preference to contact details, etcetera. You can also share your contact details (email address, Twitter handle) if you’re willing to be contacted by fellow writers in the future.

“Operation Database of the Future” is a crowdsourcing experiment. So, in essence, it’s your experiment. If the experiment works, it will be buzzing with activity, be helpful to junior science writers and have a life of its own. To make it work, you can contribute in a number of ways: add some info about a couple of publications you’ve interned or worked for or been published by; fill in a couple of columns; share the link to the database with fellow junior science writers; email us with any feedback or ideas you may have; check out the pitches and info shared by fellow writers!

Who better to help out junior science writers than fellow junior science writers, right?


Publications currently listed in “Operation Database of the Future”:

  1. Scitable, Nature Education, NPG
  2. Chemistry World, Royal Society of Chemistry
  3. Significance, Royal Statistical Society
  4. Scientific American Guest Blog
  5. Los Angeles Times
  6. New Humanist
  7. The Register
  8. BBC Focus magazine
  9. Pod Academy